As evidenced by scores of magazine covers and infomercials, fat loss is almost always associated with appearance. But Nick Tumminello, who is rapidly establishing himself as a leader and innovator in the field of human performance training, offers many other health and performance benefits of losing fat and having a lean body. The owner of Performance University International and inventor of the Core Bar reveals eight such benefits in his book, Strength Training for Fat Loss:
- Better sport performance. Although most people don't make their livings playing sports, many do enjoy competing with friends and family. Tumminello points out that a fat-loss plan can help you run faster and jump higher, negating the performance limitations of carrying around an extra 5, 10, 20, or more pounds on your body. “When you lose the fat, you automatically become more athletic,” he says. “So, if you want to improve your sport performance, an effective fat-loss program could be just the edge you need to outperform the competition.”
- Improved strength. The less excess body weight you carry around, the more reps with heavier weight you can lift to continue building muscle and increasing strength. Tumminello explains that the more body weight you carry (i.e., body fat), the weaker you'll feel and the less work you'll be able to complete. Plus, you might not even be able to complete enough reps of certain exercises to create an optimal training stimulus for increased muscle and strength, meaning your time in the weight room is not as effective as it could be if you were leaner.
- Better cardio conditioning. Not only will extra weight hold you back in the sport performance arena and in the weight room, but it can also hinder your ability to play an entire game or go on a long hike with your friends and family. “You must have the energy to be able to go the distance,” Tumminello stresses. “It's glaringly obvious that you'll get tired and quit faster when you're carrying around extra weight than you would if you had less body fat using up energy.”
- Increased energy. The more body fat you have, the sooner you will get tired and feel the need for an energy boost. Following a fat-loss plan, however, will help you become more energy efficient. Tumminello believes that this will not only make you feel better throughout the day, but it will also save you money because you won't have the need to buy expensive energy drinks.
- Less joint pain. Losing fat helps to minimize the risk of putting undue stress on your joints. While exercise and an active lifestyle can help keep joints healthy, too much stress can cause them to break down and become less healthy. Says Tumminello, “Considering the design and function of the joints, it is clear that carrying around excess body fat can turn otherwise healthy activity and exercise into activity that overloads the joints beyond their capacity and causes injury.” He also warns that additional body fat can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis.
- Healthier weight. Extra body fat places more stress on the heart and puts you at greater risk of health concerns such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and heart attack. Maintaining a healthier weight can result in a body that looks good on the outside while also being healthy on the inside.
- Less stress. Exercise is already a great way to relieve stress, and Tumminello's easy-to-follow and scientifically based system is focused on principles of sensible eating and fitness —not fads that will go out of style in a few years. That means you just have to put in the work and not worry about the confusion created by conflicting information and constantly changing fitness and diet trends.
- Less anxiety and depression, improved brain function, and better sleep. While exercise has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression, it has also been shown to improve brain function. And, Tumminello says, if you are regularly exercising, your body will need to rest and recover, therefore making it more likely that your sleep will improve.
“The value of a great fat-loss program goes far beyond helping you look great at the beach,” Tumminello concludes. “It's one of the most valuable things you can do to improve the way you feel; to improve the way you move in life, in the gym, and in sport; and to keep you feeling healthy and pain free.”
Strength Training for Fat Loss is a comprehensive, user-friendly guide to burning fat for aesthetic, performance, and health purposes. Regardless of age or sex, it delivers a safe approach to strength training for anyone.